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Belarus bans European Foundation on espionage charges

The Belarusian Foreign Ministry has banned the Warsaw-based European Foundation Dialogue, saying the organization serves as a cover for gathering intelligence and recruiting secret agents, Belarusian Television reported on 21 July. "This foundation was registered in Warsaw with an aim of promoting cooperation between scientific circles in Central and Eastern Europe," the channel's main "Panarama" newscast reported. "Its main work was conducted in Belarus, Ukraine, and Russia.

However, it turned out that under the cover of exclusively scientific interests, the foundation was actually created for conducting intelligence activities on CIS territory." According to the report, Belarusian scientists were recruited as agents while visiting Poland to give lectures or meet with Polish colleagues. "For the Polish Embassy in our country, this is not the first surprise of this kind," the report added. "In its espionage activities the Polish intelligence service does not limit itself to creating various foundations but uses career officers working under diplomatic cover."

(RFE/RL 22.vii.05)

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